Sunday, October 14, 2007

In the days of the Greek junta...

This clip takes some time to complete but you got to watch it to the end... it's in the last few minutes that it really becomes priceless.

The actor, Thanassis Vengos, is one of the classic Greek comedians in the second half of the 20th century. His comedy is reminiscent of the likes of Jacques Tati and Buster Keaton. Scarce dialogs but loads of body language. A tragic figure he was, but he made millions of Greeks LTAO.

The story is situated sometime in the period 1967-1974. The colonel junta regime was in power. Our guy is being towed in his miserable self-made car by a junk-trader in his truck. A few minutes down the road the truck stops, agents of the secret police pull-out the truck-driver and disappear. The truck is left alone and our guy, clueless, decides to continue driving the vehicle by himself. By the way, the truck carries a pair of huge loudspeakers on the outside that the junk-trader used to broadcast his merchandise in the small villages and towns he traveled to. Our guy, unaware of the external loudspeakers discovers a sound tape with revolutionary songs of Mikis Theodorakis that the junta had banned since day one (April 21st 1967). He decides to play the tape, while driving, and starts singing along with passion. In the meantime, the outside loudspeakers are glowing with loud sound, spreading the music in an area of many kilometers.

As this continues our guy approaches a village where authorities assembled the locals to preach to them about the 'great' deeds of the junta. Police is all over. A band plays military taptoe. Until our guy approaches with the truck. Before long his revolutionary songs cover the band's sound... the rest is history...

You don't need to understand Greek to enjoy this... in a week where many South Americans honored the loss 40 years ago of another revolutionary icon, this clip looks like an ode to all those oppressed by military regimes of the right OR the left, established by coward colonels and generals, who consider themselves capable of running countries, may they melt in hell!

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